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Anne's Method of Kool-Aid Dying

Our guild had a workshop on kool aid dyeing.  It is very easy and a lot of fun.  Use only 100% wool (no superwash either)

1. fill sink with a mixture of water and white vinegar.  I added about 1/4 of the gallon just to be sure.

2.  Do NOT rinse.  Let dry (partially dry is ok too, just so it is not soaking wet)

3.  Fill plastic drinking cups (we used 16 oz size) with 3 packets of kool-aid (wylers didn't work well) and some water. 

4.  Lay the hank (not a ball) of yarn in a microwave dish (like a corning ware baking dish)

5.  Use a turkey baster and start dyeing.  You can make the yarn all one color or go for the hand painted look.  Make sure you use a different baster for each color.  Be sure that the dye is all the way through to the bottom part of the yarn.  We used paper towels to soak up the extra kool-aid. 

6.  When you have the color you want or the colorway, proceed to the microwave.  Nuke on high for 2-1/2 minutes.  Take out and turn yarn over and let it rest for 2-1/2 minutes.  Return to the microwave and nuke on high for 2-1/2 minutes.  Remove from microwave.

Be careful it will be hot.  Carefully remove the yarn.  You can rinse or simply hang to let the yarn return to room temperature. 

We were outside and used a small tree to hang the newly dyed yarn from.  My neighbors were used to unusual things but I think that trimming the tree in the front yarn with 16 hanks of hand painted yarn was probably over the top. 

As a note, Ann from Philosophers Wool said that American Kool aid in the red, purple and orange flavors do not give a true color.  She is right.  Canadian red, grape and orange are the best.  We used cake decorating colors in the small jars from Wilton.  They gave a true purple and lavender and red.  This has something to do with Red Dye #6(?) being banned in the US.  Since I wasn't going to eat my wool, I figured it was safe to use.  My DH is on a fishing/hunting trip to Canada and will be returning this weekend.  He was also told not to come home until he bought me a supply of Canadian Kool-aid.  He doesn't think I'm crazy, he knows I am.  He also wants more wool socks so he's willing to trade.

We knitted the yarn into small purses and then felted them.  They are sooo cute.  The girls love them and all their friends do too.  In fact they want to do it themselves!

Have fun

Anne C (near Chicago)